Do you like chocolate? Most of us do. However, most of us don’t realize that studies show that dark chocolate is particularly rich in flavenoids, an antioxidant similar to those found in nuts and grains. Flavonoids can benefit the liver, immune system, heart and blood vessels, the connective tissue and muscles, as well as the adrenals and nervous system.
A short study was performed at the Nestle Research Center in Switzerland, led by Sunil Kochhar. The study revealed that just 1.4 ounces a day of dark chocolate could lower stress hormone levels. For all you Type A personalities out there, this is good news!
At the beginning of the study, blood tests were taken to identify each of the 30 participant’s metabolic profile. The subjects were instructed to eat 20 grams of dark chocolate both mid-morning and mid-afternoon. This amount would be around 1.4 ounces a day for us here in the US—about the size of a $2 Endangered Species chocolate bar.
After two weeks’ time, blood tests were taken again, revealing that the stress-related biomarkers were reduced. The study team concluded that “The study provides strong evidence that a daily consumption of 40 g of dark chocolate during a period of 2 weeks is sufficient to modify the metabolism of… healthy human subjects, as per variation of both host and gut microbial metabolism.”
Next time you’re feeling stressed, try some chocolate or, according to the study, if you have that little bit of dark chocolate daily, your stress will be lower automatically!